Friday, September 14, 2012

My Tribute to Mom

I have to say that I am proud that I was able to get through my tribute to Mom at her funeral without tearing up. It was hard but I managed to do it.

My tribute to Mom

While Camille and I were preparing our parents house to sell last year I found a real treasure. It was a journal that Mom kept during the beginning of her heart disease, dated probably somewhere between 1979-1980. In this journal Mom jotted down her thoughts, concerns about her condition, questions for her doctors, notes for Dad. She also wrote funny thoughts that occurred to her. This is a great example of one of those. This note is dated Sunday, August 10th (year not given).

"When I went down to xray for the lung series it was so funny to look around in this very sterile room and see all the many sizes and kinds of catheters hanging from hooks on the wall and in amongst them all was this great green plastic fly swatter. Plus the fact you are laid out on this table and then everyone runs for cover."
If you really know Mom then you can appreciate this observation.

Mom loved her friends so much and being with them always lifted her spirits . Besides Dad and her family I believe that her friendships were one of the contributing factors that helped keep her alive beyond her life expectancy. Because Mom's life expectancy was uncertain at the time; In the same journal I mentioned earlier Mom had written a letter to her friends which I interpreted as a "good-bye" letter which I would like to read to you. I think it still applies to her current friends and to those who were not able to make it to this service today.

"To my wonderful friends. Thank you all who came to dinner. Those of you who could not come were greatly missed by me. These last two years have been full of new experiences for me - what an understatement! But into my life have come a whole new set of friends. Your kindness and friendships have made some of the rough spots easier for me. I can never thank you enough for what you have given me."

I don't think she ever got around to finishing that letter for reasons unknown but I think it says a lot just as it is.

Mom never wanted her illnesses to keep her from being a good mother. No matter how she felt Mom was still a Mom and she knew she had a job to do by teaching Camille and me about...

• Etiquette - who ever heard of a "Bromley" having an informal dining table at Thanksgiving and Christmas? Knives, forks, spoons, and salt and pepper shakers always had to be in just the right spot.
• Mom taught us to sew, iron, make our beds with hospital corners, cook, and bake the traditional cinnamon rolls at Christmas time.
• We learned how to polish all of that silver that she stored in her corner cabinet in the dining room. THAT was a daunting task for us girls.
• Mom taught us how to be mothers ourselves. I can't think of a better role model.
• We learned about sacrifice and keeping a stiff upper lip.
• Mom taught us about strength and always keeping a sense of humor. Mom would always say that "if I don't laugh about it I would go crazy" (or something like that).

Throughout her illness, Mom has always maintained poise, dignity, strength, a sense of adventure, and her wonderful sense of humor.

All our lives Camille and I were fortunate enough to be witness to the bond that our parents had as a married couple. I've never known another couple to have such a deep love as our parents had. They are wonderful role models for what marriage, commitment, and true love really is.

There is so much more that I want to say but just not enough time.

Thank you to all of you for being a part of Mom's life and enriching her entire life, especially her 30+ bonus years. Each of you had a hand it keeping her alive.

Mom, you were such a good Mom. I love you and I will miss you so much.

Not one of the best pictures of me because I am very pregnant with my son here but Mom looks adorable. Before the dementia took over her memory Mom and I were VERY close.

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